Journal 5

Kosuke Tojima

Everytime I saw souvenirs from America, it reminds me of a precious time that I spent in America, and of all CIs, PAs and staffs there. I’m going to look back on the program in order to keep lessons there in mind for a long time.

We arrived at Dulles International Airport on August 4th after our 12 hours long flight. We were welcomed warmly by 4 of our PAs. On the first day of our arrival, we were suffering from jetlag and did not feel like to talking to other people. On the bus from DC to Williamsburg, we were so tired that almost everyone fell asleep.

During this program, almost all days I had lectures. Our lectures included a wide range of topics, including Colonial Williamsburg and the American Revolution, African American History and Race Relations, American Indian Cultures in the US, Church and State, and American Consumer and Popular Culture. We were fascinated by those topics, and through the lecture, we were able to gain knowledge on the history of Williamsburg, and started to realize racial and gender problems in the US, and also in Japan. After the lectures, we had a Dialogue class. In Dialogue class, we were divided into 4 groups with9-10 people each group. Framework lecturer visited every class to give us opportunity to ask questions and then we discussed the topic more deeply. In my dialogue group, we wrote down questions about aspects of lecture we did not understand or about which we would like to know more about before the lecturer came. In my opinion, the lectures were well organized, so it is difficult to raise questions.

Sometimes we had an optional day, which we did not have a lecture, and instead of lectures, we did other activity. For example in WM campus, we had a scavenger hunt on the second day in order to get familiar to the campus WM. It was really tiring, while I think it was also a really good chance for us to know each other in our focus group better and explore the campus. We went to the college museum, the oldest academic building at WM, the Wren building, as well as the bookstore where we bought a lot of souvenirs. And we went to Hampton University to visit the museum whose arts focus on African American culture during our field trip. Furthermore, we also explored Colonial Williamsburg during our spare time. After listing to the lecture about Colonial Williamsburg, we visited various places in Colonial Williamsburg such as the governor’s palace and the court.

During the 2-week program, I had so many chances to try different American food both on campus and off campus. My favorite American foot I had there is the Buffalo wings. Some of us tried the spiciest Buffalo wings. It was so spacy that all of us cried.

For cultural activities, we were separated into groups and visited church on a Sunday morning, and we also had a jazz dance class. It was the craziest dance lesson I have ever taken, because we are not used to dances here. We did a lot of jazz dances as well as pop songs. In addition, we also had hiking, beach day and went to Richmond to watch baseball.

The biggest task we had in the US is to continue our research that we started in Japan. Our group researches on baseball cheering, and compared the difference between baseball cheering in Japan and the US. In addition, other groups’ topics include job hunting, Disney and so on. We worked really hard during our every day group discussion and before our presentation, and we are really glad that our presentation turned out well.

Thanks to all CIs, PAs and staffs there, we all could spend really good time. I cannot thank you all enough for everything. I wish I could see you again sometime.




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